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  • Events, gatherings and activities

Events, gatherings and activities

Published Updated

Organisers of culture and sporting events must follow the rules about number of participants and social distance.

Organisers of culture and sporting events must follow the rules about number of participants and social distance.

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National and local infection control measures smitteverntiltak

The Government is continuing with the third step of the plan for a gradual reopening of society from 20 June 2021 at 12 p.m.

Municipalities can introduce stricter measures locally according to the infection situation. Check your municipality's website for information on local measures.

People who are not protected and who come from areas with high level of infection should not attend events in other municipalities. A high level of infection means that municipalities have strict local measures regulated in the COVID-19 regulations chapters 5A to 5C, or in corresponding local regulations. See the Government's plan for reopening (Regjeringen.no)

This article describes

  • recommendations and requirement for gatherings and events,
  • how the risk of transmission at gatherings, events and activities can be evaluated and which measures to reduce risk are appropriate.

The advice is general and should be considered together with the current regulations and the recommendations from the Directorate of Health. 

Table: Summary of number restrictions at events and gatherings. 

Type of gathering / event



Private gatherings in own
home (recommendation)

Up to 20 guests in addition to those who live in the home. Protected people are not included.

OK to have guests who are protected in addition to 20 guests who are not protected.

Private gatherings in a public
place or in rented/ borrowed premises

Indoors and outdoors: Up to 100 people

Arrange outdoors rather than indoors where possible

Birthday party, wedding, baptism, memorial, company party etc.

Indoor events without fixed designated seats

Without COVID-19 certificate: up to 400 people in cohorts of up to 200 people

With COVID-19 certificate: 50 % capacity, but maximum 1500 people. Split in cohorts of up to 500 people.

Member meetings, courses / conferences, concerts / performances, indoor sports and cultural events, tournaments and conventions where the participants make up the majority of those present

Indoor events with fixed designated seats

Without COVID-19 certificate: up to 1000 people in cohorts of up to 500 people

With COVID-19 certificate: 50 % capacity, but maximum 3000 people. Split in cohorts of up to 500 people.

Cinema, opera, concert/ performance, theatre, church, mosque, indoor sports event with spectators, seminar, etc.

Outdoor events without fixed designated seats

Without COVID-19 certificate: up to 800 people in cohorts of up to 200 people

With COVID-19 certificate: 50 % capacity, but maximum 3000 people. Split in cohorts of up to 500 people.

Sports events and other outdoor events where the participants make up the majority present, such as cups, tournaments, runs, music conventions, etc., outdoor concerts, festivals, pop-up concerts

Outdoor events with fixed designated seats

Without COVID-19 certificate: up to 2000 people in cohorts of up to 500 people

With COVID-19 certificate: 50 % capacity, but maximum 7000 people. Split in cohorts of up to 500 people.

Sports event, outdoor concert, outdoor theatre etc with seated audience.


Gatherings in private homes

Everyone is recommended to reduce their total number of contacts, so that you are with fewer people in social settings, for a shorter time and not with too many different people during a week. People are encouraged to socialise outdoors. 

In private homes or cabins, there should not be more than 20 guests in addition to household members. This also applies outdoors. If all the guests come from the same household, you can be more, but not so many that you cannot keep your distance.

For visits in private homes, "protected" people are not included in the number limits. They can also be exempt from recommendations to keep a distance in private homes (unless there is an unprotected person in a risk group present that they do not live with). It must still be possible to keep a distance between people who are not protected.

Who is considered to as protected and advice about distance at home is described in 

If you live in a municipality with regulations about how many people can visit in a private home, you must follow these.

For these gatherings:

  • Sick people should not participate, even if they have only mild symptoms.
  • There must be enough space for guests who are not protected to keep a distance of 1 metre if they are not from the same household or similarly close contacts.
  • Good opportunities for hand washing or the use of hand sanitiser if necessary.

Children in childcare cemtres or primary school cohorts can have visits from their own cohort, so that the entire cohort can be invited home for a children's birthday, for example.


Regulated requirements

By events, the regulations refer to the following gatherings in public places or in premises and outdoor areas that are rented or borrowed, including hotels, community centres, assembly halls and conference halls:

  1. sporting events, including tournaments, cups and matches, but not organised training or training matches 
  2. cultural events, including concerts, exhibition openings, opera, ballet, theatre and cinema, but not organised training, rehearsals or exams
  3. seminars, conferences, courses, member meetings and other professional gatherings, including dining without serving of alcohol, but not meetings or gatherings that are part of ordinary work or education at school or university
  4. religious and non-religious gatherings and ceremonies, including weddings, funerals, christenings and confirmations
  5. private gatherings; gatherings for family, friends and acquaintances or social gatherings related to work or school, including events or ceremonies, parties and dining with serving of alcohol related to seminars, conferences, courses and other professional gatherings.

Number of participants at private events

For private gatherings there can be up to 100 guests indoors and outdoors. It is recommended to arrange gatherings outdoors where possible. Private gatherings are where family, friends and acquaintances, school pupils or colleagues can gather in social events (e.g. birthday parties, baptisms, weddings, school balls or work parties) in a public place or in rented or borrowed premises.

Number of participants at public events

Table: Number of participants at other events (indoors and outdoors)
Without COVID-19 certificate



Without fixed, designated places

Up to 400 people (200 x 2 cohorts)

Up to 800 people (200 x 4 cohorts)

With fixed, designated places

Up to 1000 people (500 x 2 cohorts)

Up to 2000 people (500 x 4 cohorts)

With COVID-19 certificate



Without fixed, designated places

Up to 50 % capacity, but max 1500 people (500 x 2 cohorts)

Up to 50 % capacity, but max 3000 people (500 x 4 cohorts)

With fixed, designated places

Up to 50 % capacity, but max 3000 people (500 x 5 cohorts)

Up to 50 % capacity, but max 7000 people (500 x 10 cohorts)

At events within culture, sport and leisure for people under the age of 20, everyone present, including participants, shall be counted in the total number of people. This includes parents and guardians.

At "open events" that often take place outdoors, such as pop-up concerts, the rules for events also apply. If these events are to be carried out, the event area must be physically delimited (within a fenced area, an area surrounded by barricades etc.) Delimitation is necessary to be able to limit the number of participants and be able to register participants to have an overview of who is present.

Number of participants at events with cohorts

When the audience or participants in the event are divided into cohorts / groups, there must always be at least two metres distance between the groups. The groups can be replaced during the event, if this is done in a careful way according to infection control measures with no contact between them. Employees and organisers can be the same for multiple cohorts.

Employees and others in addition to the number of participants

The following people should not be included in the total number of people who may be present at the event:

  • employees and contractors who are responsible for the implementation of events 
  • performers carrying out cultural activities under the direction of a professional actor
  • top athletes, support staff and referees when conducting sporting events
  • players, support staff and referees when conducting league matches in elite football (football league) that the Norwegian Football Association has decided are ready to follow the association's infection control protocols prepared in collaboration with the Norwegian Directorate of Health
  • journalists, photographers and other representatives from the media who are required to ensure media coverage of the event.

COVID-19 certificate

The COVID-19 certificate has been introduced for domestic use at events so more participants can attend events.

The COVID-19 certificate will be green for those who have been fully vaccinated, or have received the first vaccine dose at least three weeks ago, for people who have had COVID-19 and for those who have had a negative COVID-19 test taken less than 24 hours ago.

An organiser must decide whether they want to carry out the event with or without the use of a COVID-19 certificate. The use of a COVID-19 certificate means that more participants / audiences are allowed at the event, but also that several requirements are set for the implementation. Consider what is best for your event.

For events where most participants are children or adolescents, it is recommended to follow the number restrictions for events without a COVID-19 certificate.

See also: 


Arrangement with fixed designated seats

The term "fixed, designated seats" is used to regulate the number of people who may be present at an event. This means that the audience can sit on a chair, bench or similar, or in a fixed place on the floor during the entire event. 


The organiser is responsible for facilitating that participants are able to keep at least 1 metre distance (measured from shoulder to shoulder) to others who are not in the same household or similarly close, and the distance must be able to be kept throughout the event. People who are protected can sit with others in the same entourage unless they are unprotected and in a risk group.

Exemptions from distance requirements

In venues with fixed seating, one vacant seat between fixed seats between spectators in the same row of seats will be considered a sufficient distance. 

Children and young people who are in the same cohort in childcare centre or primary school are exempt from the distance requirement for events. Some other groups can also be exempt from the distance requirement at an event if it is necessary for the activity to be carried out normally, see the COVID-19 regulations §13 c for which groups are exempt.

No exemptions can be made from the distance requirement for the audience or spectators at the event. The exemption only applies during the ongoing activity, and it is important that the participants relate to each other according to the current infection control advice.

Requirements of the organiser

A person or company must be appointed as the organiser with responsibility for the event meeting the requirements of the COVID-19 regulations. Those who are present must be informed about who is the organiser and who can be contacted with questions about infection control.

The organiser is responsible for:

  • having an overview of who is present, in order to assist the municipality in the event of subsequent contact tracing. If it is necessary to make a list of participants with contact details for this purpose, this should be deleted after 14 days. The organiser shall inform those present that an overview is being made.
  • ensuring that the event is carried out according to infection control guidelines

Alcohol licensing

For events with a licence to serve alcohol, the same rules as for restaurants apply:

  • Serving of alcohol only takes place during table service and there must be seating for all guests.
  • Guests are not admitted after 00:00 am (midnight). (Admission stop does not apply for events that require a corona certificate). 

General measures to reduce transmission risk

Planning and risk assessment

All organisers need to make a plan to ensure good infection control management. As an organiser, you must have sufficient capacity and resources for good implementation.

The organiser must carry out a risk assessment and decide whether it is justifiable to hold the event. Therefore, it is important to read the current advice for infection control. See the table for risk assessments below. 

For larger events, contact the local health authorities for questions about implementation. 

In the case of "open events", the organiser should, in addition to planning for the event itself, also consider the risk that the event will attract a larger number of people outside the limited area and whether this will involve a risk of transmission.

Information to employees and participants

  • Provide information about

Assessing the venue

Participants must be able to keep a distance of at least 1 metre throughout the entire event, so you must assess the available area within the premises you will use. As a rule of thumb, estimate 4 m2 per person. In rooms where people will sit during the event (e.g. at a table or in a hall), the space requirement may be somewhat smaller.

Singing / shouting among the audience can lead to increased droplet secretion (spit) and therefore an increased risk of infection, so take this into account when assessing the space requirement.

  • It is recommended to arrange for a distance of 2 metres between people who will be singing together indoors in areas with increased transmission.
  • People from the same household can sit / stand together.


Rooms with poor ventilation and high occupancy can increase the risk of transmission, particularly when many people are gathered. A normal ventilation level is recommended, with normal maintenance of the ventilation system. Increasing the level of ventilation in an already well ventilated room can potentially increase the transmission risk. Where there is no mechanical ventilation, open the windows before and during the event.

Measures to limit contact

Avoid congestion where participants are expected to form queues or gather in clusters. Have special focus on entrances / exits, toilets, dining areas, etc. The use of guards can be considered if it is necessary to ensure safe activity.

Hand hygiene and cough etiquette

Ensure good capacity for hand hygiene. This is especially important for toilet areas and for dining areas. See 


Tools for organisers

As an aid to the organisers, a template has been developed for risk assessment of events and a checklist to ensure that infection control measures are in place that can be downloaded here as either Word or pdf files: 

Events at venues serving food and drink

Events and activities of longer duration (for children, adolescents and adults)


08.07.2021: Updated in accordance with the the government's adjustments step 3 from 8. july

21.06.2021: Updated paragraphs: Number of participants at events with cohorts and COVID-19 certificate

07.06.2021: Corrected and updated text about participating in events across municipal boundaries in accordance with the government's recommendations Removed text about trade fairs and markets in table.

02.06.2021: Removed "outdoor markets and trade fairs" under Outdoor events without fixed designated seats.

31.05.2021: From 27 May, exhibitions and temporary markets are not considered to be events. Removed text about flea markets. Updated text about alcohol serving.

27.05.2021: Updated in accordance with the government's step 2 in reopening, as well as updated the recommendation for gatherings in private homes with advice for protected people

25.03.2021: Changed according to updated national recommendations

16.04.2021: Updated according to the Government guidelines for events and gatherings from 16.04.2021

24.02.2021: New advice about licensing according to changes in regulations

23.02.2021: Specified about considering the need for guards at events

22.02.2021: Updated according to Norwegian version

03.02.2021: Moved information about organised activities for children to another article

25.01.2021: Added new, stricter measures in 25 municipalities in Eastern Norway

19.01.2021: Updated according to new guidelines for events and gatherings presented by the Government on 18.01.2021.

08.01.2021: Clarification that temporary recommendations are implemented from January 4th to January 19th

04.01.2021: Updated with new guidelines for number of people at events and private gatherings as decided by Government on 03.01.2021.  New paragraph about vaccination and implications for planning of events.

14.12.2020: Added section about congregational singing and updated text about ventilation.

23.11.2020: Updated with advice about open events, such as switching on Christmas tree lights.

16.11.2020: Corrected sentence: 600 people outdoors where the audience sits in fixed seats, divided into groups / cohorts of up to 200 people. 

13.11.2020: Updated paragraph about fixed seating.

09.11.2020: Updated article according to new, stricter measures, see specification 05.11.2020
Text updated with information about the changes that apply from 28 October (announced at government press conference 26 October)

13.10.2020: Removed the sentence: "Alcohol cannot be served after midnight and should not be consumed after 00.30 a.m." Changed from 10 to 14 days and added second sentence:  "If it is necessary to make a list of participants with contact details for this purpose, this should be deleted after 14 days. The organiser shall inform those present that an overview is being made."

12.10.2020: Updated text with changes that come into effect today, removing "from 12th October.." 

07.10.2020: General updates to text as per Norwegian version. Updated files. 

05.10.2020: Updated files under "Checklist" and "Risk assessment"

16.09.2020 Updated files under "Checklist" and "Risk assessment"

27.08.2020 Added sentence under Events, point 1 "A training match will only be considered to be an event if it has spectators."

21.08.2020 added sentence about table service when alcohol is served

17.08.2020 Added paragraph about flea markets. 

14.08.2020 Updated advice regarding changes and specifications in the COVID-19 regulations, and new paragraph about private gatherings.

10.08.2020 Added sentence about people under the age of 20 being exempt from the distance requirements during sports events within their sporting district - under "Events for up to 200 people."

16.07.2020: Added link about safe service at buffets and salad bars

26.06.2020: added section about exemption from distance for matches and competitions. Added section about food-serving venues 

18.06.2020: Updated with more details about advice about keeping a physical distance.

Information about events and summer activities for children and adolescents, plus advice about planning and risk assessment is revised and added, in addition to checklist and risk assessment for events for adults and children/adolescents under 20 years.

Added that from 15th June 2020 it is allowed to have events in public places for up to 200 people, which events this applies to and which groups are exempt from the physical distance requirements in order for the event to be performed as normal. Added that it will not be opened for events for more than 500 people before 1st September at the earliest. Removed the paragraphs "Events and summer activities of longer duration for children and adolescents", "Planning" and "Organisation."

Removed amusement parks from section about arrangements with over 500 people as per Norwegian version.

Added information about "Events and summer activities of longer duration for children and adolescents" 

Added information about planning and risk assessments.

Updated as per Norwegian version. Advice about planning and risk assessments will be translated soon.

Updated according to Directorate of Health's recommendations published on 30th April, and link to Infection Control for Music Practice. 

Updated text with new advice from Directorate of Health about events in the summer.